The Giants have made their first move of the 2011 Winter Meetings as they have agreed to send CF Andres Torres and RP Ramon Ramirez to the New York Mets for CF Angel Pagan. This seems to be a great deal for the Giants, as they traded a good relief arm, which they are over-flowing with, and a soon to be 34-year-old CF, who the were going to non-tender anyways, for the 30-year old CF, Angel Pagan.
Torres was completely overmatched at the plate in 2011 (.221/.312/.330), showing that his amazing and inspirational 2010 season was most likely a fluke. Torres began showing his age last season, as leg and foot injuries limited his time on the field. With the November addition of Melky Cabrera, Torres became a candidate to be non-tendered, thus making this essentially a Ramirez for Pagan swap.
Ramon Ramiez was very good out of the pen during his year-and-a-half stint in San Francisco. He posted outstanding numbers last season, boasting a 2.62 ERA and 1.17 WHIP, with 66 strikeouts in 68.2 innings pitched. Ramirez is very durable, but seems to be more comfortable as a 7th inning guy. Ramirez is still young enough where he can be of value to the Mets, but with the Giants committing serious money to Affelt and Lopez, and Heath Hembre being close to taking over a prominent bullpen role in the bigs, the Giants did not want to pay upwards of $3 million to retain Ramirez in 2012.
By bringing in Angel Pagan, who like Torres is a switch hitter, the Giants fill some of their major needs. They obtain a starting CF and potential leadoff hitter, which allows Melky Cabrera to slide over to RF. and bat in the lower half in the lineup. which should really help the Giants. Pagan also fills a huge void on the bases (32 SB in 2011), where the Giants ranked 24th in the Majors last year with only 85 stolen bases as a team. This move also makes sense, as like Cabrera, Pagan is in his last year of team control and will not block top prospect, Gary Brown (CF). This will give the Giants a chance to give Cabrera and Pagan a one-year look, and a chance to offer one of them a contract offer to play RF in 2013 (and possibly beyond), if they choose they are worthy.
This seems like a great move for the Giants, as they have improved their offense, team speed, and defense, without giving up a major piece of their organization.